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Old 04-01-2009, 08:09 AM   #1
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Default Obama: What did he do THIS time?

Two was already covered. Second one is new...instead of recycling military ammo and reusing it, now Obama wants it destroyed. Hmmmm..wonder why that might be?

Make vets pay for injuries during service?
By J.R. Labbe
McClatchy Newspapers

Published on Wednesday, Apr 01, 2009
FORT WORTH, Texas: The bad ideas just keep Twittering out of the Obama administration, and some of them are so ridiculous that even the Democrats who rule the congressional roost are squawking back. Take the featherbrained idea to make military veterans pay for service-related injuries with their private insurance.

Surely Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki, a four-star Army general who lost part of a foot when he stepped on a land mine while serving in Vietnam, almost choked on his words recently when he had to confirm that the controversial proposal was under consideration.
The White House, in what is becoming a pattern of deflecting responsibility, would neither confirm nor deny that the option was being discussed.

Veterans' groups were understandably outraged at what they viewed as a violation of a sacred trust. It's one thing to bill wounded vets' private insurance if they receive care from the VA for medical issues that aren't related to service injuries, like the flu. But to even think that it would be acceptable to foist health-care charges onto a soldier's tab for injuries suffered while wearing a uniform is unbelievable.

Good for Sens. Patty Murray, D-Wash., and Richard Burr, R-N.C., for uniting in saying no way would the idea get beyond a dustbin in a Senate committee room if one of their colleagues was stupid enough to carry this particular bucket of water.
OK, maybe they didn't say it just like that, but Murray did exclaim that the proposal would be ''dead on arrival.''

Then there was the recent move to end a long-established practice in the Defense Department of selling fired brass ammunition casings to companies that remanufacture them into ammo for sale to law enforcement and private gun owners. The new policy required the military cartridge brass to be destroyed. The Defense Logistics Agency, the Pentagon's largest combat support agency and the organization that helps dispose of materiel and equipment no longer needed by the military, classified small-arms cartridge cases as ''sensitive munitions'' as part of an overall effort to make sure national security is not jeopardized by the sale of any Defense property.

Given that this administration is all abuzz with going green, crushing a perfectly recyclable product runs afoul of the ''reduce, reuse, recycle'' mantra of environmentalists. It's difficult not to assume that someone new in Defense wanted to reduce the national supply of ammunition by removing the ability to reuse fired brass.

Gun owners across the country have been hard-pressed to find ammo — and that's not just survivalists who are into hoarding (although some of that is undoubtedly going on). Texas hunters and ranchers, for example, who use .223 and .308 ammo to rid their property of destructive feral hogs — trust me, you don't want to go after one of these with a .22 — were scrambling to find it and then, when they could locate some, the price was outrageous.

Hunters and sport shooters owe a big shout-out to Democratic Sens. Jon Tester and Max Baucus of Montana — men who represent a state with some of the best elk hunting in the contiguous United States — for intervening with the Defense Logistics Agency's director, Vice Adm. Alan S. Thompson. The senators, in a letter dated March 17, rightly pointed out that the ''use of firearms and reloading brass is a part of our outdoor heritage.''

''Prohibiting the sale of fired military brass would reduce the supply of ammunition — preventing individual gun owners from fully exercising their Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms,'' they wrote. ''We urge you to address this situation promptly.''
Good on Thompson for doing so. Bad on the administration for changing the policy in the first place.
If anyone in the Obama administration wonders why so many veterans and gun owners don't trust the new commander in chief, there's your answer.
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